Youth Education Report

by Greg Kucharewski
(from Jersey Coast Anglers Association July 2020 Newsletter)
2020 JCAA Youth Education Award

The JCAA Youth Education Committee is accepting nominations for the 2020 Youth Education Award. There are many NJ HOFNOD volunteers doing great work to bring successes to the fishing community but sometimes individuals and sport-fishing organizations go above and beyond to make the future of fishing better for our youngsters.

Youth Education Award Criteria: Promoting “Hooked On Fishing Not On Drugs (HOFNOD),” Certified HOFNOD instructors, number of fishing or aquatic education events, JCAA lending library usage, and creativity for promoting youth fishing events. Submit your nominations in writing and email to

Please view the JCAA website for the next general membership meeting.

Weekend Fishing Rodeo Lake Julianna

Mr. Vito Cardinale, CEO/President Cardinale Enterprises LLC, and Mr. Randy Johnson, Laurita Winery will host a Weekend Fishing Rodeo at Lake Julianna Ponderosa Estates Farm, Millstone Township, NJ 08535. The weekend will include a fishing fun day for children with disabilities and other special needs and honoring disabled veterans, along with active-duty military from Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst. Saturday, August 29th 10:00 a.m., special needs youngsters will attend the 4th Annual “Kid’s Wish’n to go Fishing” fun day and Sunday, August 30th 9:00 a.m., Play HOOK-e “Take a Veteran Fishing Day” will honor disabled veterans, and active-duty military.

Organizers decided to combine the Kids Wish’n to go Fish’n Fun Day and Take a Veteran Fishing Day to commemorate the environmental improvements at Lake Julianna that include: Disabled access and bird-watching observation stand, catfish feeding station, planting of environmental grasses, duck pond, frog and rabbit cover habitat areas. Several volunteer groups in Monmouth and Ocean County assisted with the ecosystem restoration project to provide a healthy environment for fish and wildlife. The goal of the Weekend Fishing Rodeo is to offer special needs children and disabled veterans a day to fish and feel the health benefits of getting in touch with nature while making good memories.

Attendees and their guest are invited to fish at Lake Julianna to catch and release big fish and then join Mr. Vito Cardinale and his staff of volunteers for a free BBQ that will provide soft drinks, pizza, hamburgers & hotdogs and other goodies. Registration is mandatory through EventBrite Play HOOK-e. New Jersey freshwater fishing license is not required because Lake Julianna is located on a private farm. Disabled Veterans and special needs children with mobility challenges will have use of 4x4 transportation around the lake, along with fishing assistance if needed. Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing Jersey Shore Chapter will assist with fly fishing instruction and their members will teach you how to catch some big fish on a fly rod. Boating Education and Rescue (B.E.A.R.) will bring their mobile education booth and “Hooked on Fishing not On Drugs” loaner rods and reels. Mike and Debbie Bennett B.E.A.R. and volunteers will teach youngsters casting techniques.

Don Marantz, Event Chairman stated: “We have plenty of door prizes, terminal tackle, bait, and other fishing equipment available to ensure that Lake Julianna, Weekend Fishing Rodeo participants have an enjoyable time.” “Come out and catch a smile.”

The event is sponsored by Cardinale Enterprises LCC, Laurita Winery, and supported by Vietnam Veterans of America Shore Area Chapter 12, Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing, Boating Education and Rescue and the Jersey Coast Anglers Association. You can register for this free event at the EventBrite Play HOOK-e registration page or at VVA Chapter 12.


During 2020, think about becoming a HOFNOD instructor. NJ HOFNOD facilitator workshops are hosted by the DEP Division of Fish and Wildlife and it was well worth the time to learn creative aquatic activities to teach youngsters the importance becoming environmental stewards. This workshop is a great learning experience. If you are interested in attending a NJ HOFNOD workshop, please phone or email Liz Jackson, NJ HOFNOD Coordinator Phone: 908-637-4125 x122 email: Next training date is May 15-17, 2020.

The Hooked on Fishing-Not on Drugs Program's Youth Fishing Challenge statewide event will take place on the state's second Free Fishing Day, Saturday, October 17th, when no license is required to fish regardless of age. See the NJ HOFNOD website for more information.

High School Fishing Teams

High school fishing students can sharpen their fishing skills over the summer and get ready for the largest surf fishing tournament along the Jersey Shore. New Jersey high school fishing teams will have the opportunity to sign-up for the Governor’s Surf Fishing Tournament 2020. The tournament is rescheduled for Sunday, October 25th.

We expect the following schools to join the GSFT tournament: Manasquan High School Fishing Club, Toms River HS North, Delaware Valley Regional HS, Lacey Township High School Fishing Club, Brick HS Fishing Club, Gateway Regional High School, Manahawkin High School, and Howell High School. The Governor’s Cup committee would like to see more schools and organizations enter the tournament this year. Schools that would like more information about the GSFT can contact Karen Byrne at 609-748-4347 or e-mail

Over 25 new Tica rods and reels available for surf fishing instruction
Surf Fishing Clinic at IBSP

Many thanks to George Browne and other volunteers from New Jersey Beach Buggy Association that worked on outfitting the surf fishing cart with new equipment for fishing clinics and surf fishing instruction. The surf fishing cart is used to teach new anglers, students, and veterans the sport of surf casting and fishing. George Brown, NJBBA, Tom Sheehan, George Murnyak, Lou Fusco, Dan Weidmuller and Tim Burden will conduct fishing clinics at the park. A lot of work went into organizing the surf cart that holds seining nets, waders, surf bags, rod/reels, tables, terminal tackle, and maintenance equipment. Beach wheelchairs with balloon tires are available for disabled anglers to utilize. The surf cart is also used for NJ HOFNOD schools, veteran Play HOOK-e fishing programs and community-based programs.

Sign up for the next beginners surf fishing clinic on Friday, July 3rd, 8 am until 12 noon. Please phone IBSP for more information or register here.

NJ Sea Grant Kid's Summer Program

During the summer, join New Jersey Sea Grant Consortium for their new Virtual Marine Science Day Camp! This daily alternative to their annual in-person program utilizes fun, interactive 60-minute Zoom sessions. Children can participate with experienced NJSGC Education Staff focused on ocean sciences that are sure to excite children about aquatic education.

View their website to lean about this great learning experience.

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